Lovin' time at Coon Hollow Farm

Lovin' time at Coon Hollow Farm
Our Olde English "Babydoll" Sheep and their lambs

Monday, October 5, 2015

The evolution of a concept

A few years back I was making scarves using locks. I was knitting the scarves and pulling the locks through which worked but I wasn't pleased with it. I dyed some mohair locks and decided to knit them in. I did this at our Fiber Arts Group one night and then entered the first one into a Country Fair and got a red ribbon for it!

My second attempt was a thicker collar and thicker locks which came out nice.

My third attempt was an even thicker collar, adding locks at two sticthes instead of three and a variation of color.

I was having some concern about blocking them and mentioned it to my friend Jody who suggested this great idea! I rinsed them in some soapy water and tacked them to my felting board! This project was fun and can't wait to see someone wearing them!

Thursday, October 1, 2015

Happy October everyone!

It's officially Fall! With the coming of October, my favorite month of the year, it is officially fall!!! Pumpkin and Apple Pie, apple cider, the beautiful colors of the leaves, the cooler temps, hoodies, jeans, boots, snuggling under the covers, fairs, pumpkin picking, hay rides, wood stoves, halloween parties, hiking, bonfires, my children's birthdays, and so on with the Autumn fun!!! Happy October everyone!!!

Wednesday, September 30, 2015

Molting is not just for chickens!

Some of our baby angora rabbits have gone to great homes and for now we are keeping "Chester", the chestnut agouti buck, who is in the picture above His personality is just like his fathers, laid back and sweet.

At 16 weeks today, they are molting their coats. The wool is so soft, fine and beautiful!

...and then we have the diva, little "Miss Peaches" the fawn doe. Fresh, full of attitude and a challenge at every turn. Her beautiful fawn wool is gorgeous though.

I plucked her and got some beautiful wool.

Just look at that face, beautiful but a doe with attitude!

Wednesday, September 23, 2015

All it took was...

We have had the angora goats for 6 months now. They were housed with the Alpacas until we sold our sheep and then we moved them down. During this time, we have had a hard time earning their trust. We tried treats here and there but nothing until I was giving the alpacas some banana chips one day and that was our big break through!

They go simply nuts for banana chips. They have become social and trusting, who knew with just some simple dried banana chips!

Maddie goes simply gaga over them!

With Maddie on the left, and Pru on the right it's all I can do to get them in them fast enough! I just love these girls, they have become trusting, loving and follow me around now. Pru is taking a little longer but it's okay. I am afraid we are going to ruin it all, they need worming and with all the trust we have developed, maybe I will put the wormer in a banana chip!!!

Tuesday, September 15, 2015

...and so it begins, the honey harvest...

The bees have done very well this year. We had a great summer, not too much rain, not too too hot, kind of just right. Not being a big fan of summer I can't complain too much. So now it begins, the decapping, the straining, the bottling and the labeling and the worse part, a sticky kitchen!

But in the end it is so worth it, the dark golden honey of this year is amazing! It is rich and flavorful. Thanks to these amazing insects who are the only ones that provide us with such a rich resource.

Wednesday, September 9, 2015

The Rainbow of the Angora

Oh the amazing colors of the angora rabbit! The variations in the color as you part the wool is amazing. This is the little runt, who has turned out to be a small buck and a sweetheart like his dad.

The fawn doe, all I can say is OMG! The camera picked up a lot of the vibrant color she has. So many shades of gorgeous wool.

The chestnut agouti buck is equally gorgeous but the camera was not as willing to pick up the colors.

and then the chocolate doe, nice variations of shade and color. All the babies are off to their first show this weekend to see how they do. I am looking forward to meeting with the judges and learning all about this breed!

Tuesday, September 8, 2015

No Dearth here!

Just look at these girls! Working and working from the moment the sun comes up to the moment the sun sets. If you look close you can see the pollen they are bringing in...

and another shot a short time later as I watched them bring in the pollen. All the hives look like this right now. Obviously the pollen dearth is not upon us yet!

I managed to harvest some frames on Sunday when it was cool in the morning. Look at the difference in the capping of these two frames.

This frame is almost saturated in honey, lazy in structure...

while this frame is more neater as if they took time to cap it nicely. Either way it's going to be a bumper year for honey. There is a lot of honey up there but not quite ready yet. We will revisit them in a couple more weeks and see if the honey is ready!

Monday, September 7, 2015

A dyeing day win!

The other day I set out to dye some angora mohair that I had. I was going for some pastels for some baby gifts I need to get started. The picture doesn't give the colors justice. It came out beautiful with lots of variations and blends. For the most part I am quite pleased but this may evolve to something else!

Thursday, August 27, 2015

Moving on to a new chapter...

Our Alpacas had one last meal with our Olde English "Babydoll" sheep...

they enjoyed one last meal before they moved on to their new home. We decided to sell them a few months ago and finally found a home we were happy with. We started this herd 8 years ago with 5 generations present.

My Lily was most concerned as I had a good cry but this is a good thing for all of us.

They were all loaded...

and off they went to begin a new chapter where they are going to be in 4H fairs and have some young girls to enjoy them.

And as we prepare to begin a new chapter as grand parents!!!! Our son Timmy and Sarah will soon be parents and we are thrilled! We are counting the days until the little "marshmallow" will be here! I am already knitting and planning a quilt in honor of our next generation!!!

Wednesday, August 26, 2015

It started with one!

Finally our chicks from April have begun to lay...

and no sooner than after we got the first one, the Americana's aka Easter Eggers began to lay too! It has been a long wait for them to begin laying. I don't ever remember it taking this long, damn fancy chickens!!

Monday, August 3, 2015

A bunny baby outing!

What a beautiful day it was to get the babies out in the fresh air. They had a snack and then explored their environment. They are 8 weeks old now, it has gone so fast and they are preparing to head off to their new homes.

The little chestnut agouti buck even stood up to get a better look...

This baby is such a sweetheart and has already done her first program at a school! She did so good and was so calm.

Here's a shoot of the fawn who also did the program and did really well too!

Tawny, their mom has been away from them since weaning so it was a day of beauty for her. She got a full clip down, this is before...

taking a break from grooming with her kids. She really enjoyed spending time with them.

and this was after, a groomer I am not! But she is clipped down, cool and comfortable.

Tuesday, July 21, 2015

My new loom!!!

I am so excited about my new loom!!! A friend gave me a heads up that a woman who was a former colonial re-enactor was moving and had to unload a lot of things. Among them was this Structo Artcraft Loom!

It is more of a table loom than a floor loom which pleased me. The pedals are up on the side for changing the warp as you weave. These looms were made in the early 20th century and are all different. Some come in metal and some in wood. They evolved over time but I like this one the best!

What I love is it came already warped and ready to go! This loom is known as "the work horse of looms"! I have been on the search for the manual that goes with the loom. So far I have found it in the Library of Congress in Washington, D.C....road trip maybe???

Wednesday, July 1, 2015

Herbal iced tea anyone?!

Have you grown those herbs and just don't know what to do with them? Especially those mints that are out of control?! Well let's make some iced tea! First take some spearmint...

some peppermint...

some apple mint...

some lemon balm...

and maybe some lemon verbena or what ever you might have!

Give them a nice little rinse with cold water...

put them into a large pitcher and pack them in really well!

Add some water and bruise the leaves well with a wooden spoon. I then place it in the fridge for a couple days so the flavor will seep out.
I then take some iced tea mix, lemon is really better. You can also use tea bags and make sun tea as well. Add the required powdered mix to the bottom of a pitcher. Add 1/4 of your herbal mixture and fill the rest with water...

and there you go! An iced tea that will impress your friends, taste divine and puts those herbs to use too! Enjoy!!!